Race start, Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, 2022

Rate the race: 2022 Spanish Grand Prix

2022 Spanish Grand Prix

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What did you think of today’s race? Share your verdict on the Spanish Grand Prix.

RaceFans has held polls on every F1 race since 2008 to find out which fans thought of each round of the season.

Join in the latest poll and give your verdict on the race: 10 being the highest and 1 the lowest. Please vote based on how entertaining and exciting you thought the race was, not on how your preferred driver or team performed.

What were the best and worst moments of the race? What was the main thing you’ll remember about it? Rate the race out of ten and leave a comment below:

Rate the Race: 2022 Spanish Grand Prix

  • 10 (3%)
  • 9 (7%)
  • 8 (34%)
  • 7 (34%)
  • 6 (14%)
  • 5 (4%)
  • 4 (0%)
  • 3 (2%)
  • 2 (1%)
  • 1 (1%)

Total Voters: 189

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1 = ‘Terrible’, 10 = ‘Perfect’

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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89 comments on “Rate the race: 2022 Spanish Grand Prix”

  1. My team don’t make mistakes.

    Driver of a team that makes mistakes, 2022

    1. Looks like they may be starting to recover now tho. You’ll enjoy seeing them win again, I expect?
      I don’t know why you think LH is supposed to be infallible. Should he have answered the question with “My team are a bunch of incompetents.” ?

      1. Isn’t it amazing to see so many people that claimed to be sick and tired of Mercedes winning everything gleefully mocking them now instead of celebrating the success of the teams that are winning at the moment? This is something I’ll never understand.

        1. @Emma I suspect it’s because “gleefully mocking” is the only emotion they are capable of, because that’s all they experience themselves :)
          It’s a shame they miss out on the good stuff, really. Good racing all down the field this year.

  2. Decently good race for Montmelo’s standards, perhaps even slightly better than Miami GP.

    1. Fantastic race for montmelo, definitely an improvement over the last 2 dreadful races we have had.

      1. Yeah, that’s my feeling too @peartree, though not sure I’d say absolutely dreadful, but certainly this was more genuinely interesting than those or than what Montmelo usually has on offer (best one since 2016?).

        1. @bosyber I was talking about Imola and Miami but agreed regardless.

  3. 6 for me. Above average, quite entertaining but I never enjoy a race being won due to mechanical issues. Interesting to see how Mercs have improved, they should have pitted Russell immediately as they were doing well against Verstappen. Verstappens DRS issue showed exactly why DRS needs ditching. I love seeing a slower car keep a fast car behind, these guys should work towards the overtake. Verstappens mistake could have been critical due to DRS not being there. When it worked it was far too effective

    1. Verstappens DRS issue showed exactly why DRS needs ditching.

      Because a quicker car overtaking a slower car cannot possibly be tolerated?

      1. petebaldwin (@)
        22nd May 2022, 15:49

        No – because it allows a slower car to defend. If a faster car should get ahead by pressing a button, why not just do a time trial instead?

        1. No – because it allows a slower car to defend.

          I’ve seen enough Trulli trains to last several lifetimes.

          1. petebaldwin (@)
            22nd May 2022, 15:53

            I’ve seen enough battles ruined by DRS passes to last even longer….

          2. You mean like that DRS train at Imola?

          3. I’ve seens enough races like 2004 Hungarian GP or 2002 San Marino GP.

          4. @apostle

            Wait, are you criticizing Imola for not being able to overtake even with DRS? If so we agree.

      2. If they’re that quick, why do they need DRS?

        If we’re going to have DRS, the zones need to be much smaller. Or, develop mechanisms which narrow the DRS slot as the chasing car closes the gap, so they can’t just breeze past.

        1. why do they need DRS?

          Because in Montmelo you need a car more than 2 secs a lap quicker to have any chance at overtaking without DRS.

          1. Perez brushed past Russell and certainly wasn’t 2 seconds a lap quicker. Verstappen gave it a good go despite his DRS issue, and it was way more enjoyable to watch.

          2. @apostle

            Sergio Perez was roughly 1 sec per lap quicker than George Russell, and hence needed DRS to complete the pass in Montmelo.

        2. Cause without DRS you would never see battles between Leclerc and Verstappen

        3. Alonso was quicker than Petrov in 2010 Abu Dhabi GP but you can’t overtake anywhere mainly in Yas Marina

          1. @retroka The thing that gets overlooked with Alonso not been able to get by Petrov in Abu Dhabi 2010 is that the main reason why he couldn’t was because Renault were running less downforce and had a more effective f-duct which had both cars at the top of the speed traps by a fair margin all weekend.

            Alonso had in fact overtaken other cars before he got to Petrovbut the significant straght line speed advantage of the Renault along with the straght line speed defecit of the Ferrari that weekend was tha main reason he wasn’t able to get past Petrov.

            Alonso was faster in the corners but the Ferrari was from memory 15kph slower than the Renault on the straghts, The Renault also had far better traction off slower corners and those were the reasons he couldn’t find a way past.

            Alonso was simply not fast enough where it mattered and i think it would have been wrong fora gimmick like DRS to have allowed Alonso past easier given how Renault simply had done a better job on setup and strategy with Petrov also not making any mistakes.

        4. Max got DRS sometimes when he was further away which brought him close to Russel but enough to pass. I think this shows that there should be a way where if a car is within 2 secs of a car you can activate DRS but not if you are within 1sec. So this brings the gap closer but still not make it decisive and make the front driver handicapped.

          1. Also, wasn’t the Merc the fastest thru the speedtrap this weekend?

    2. Alex McFarlane
      22nd May 2022, 15:57

      I would much prefer an Indycar style time limited push to pass that can be used to attack or defend as the drivers see fit.

    3. Thanks all of you for responding. A good healthy debate is always important (without toxicity). The reason I mention DRS is for the following reason. Verstappen made a mistake and without a giid working DRS he had to work very hard, he was clearly the quicker driver but we got to see great defensive driving by Russell and this whole spectacle of chess is more interesting than seeing DRS passes which normally are no more interesting than me rewatching my own dashcam footage. One of the classics is mansell and senna in 1992 at monaco and mansell did not overtake. A Trulli train may be frustrating if it doesn’t work in favour of your preferred guy but it makes it way more interesting. It was great to see Verstappen earn that win after his gravel visit. Far more interesting than DRS quickly sorting it all out

      1. we got to see great defensive driving by Russell and this whole spectacle of chess is more interesting than seeing DRS

        I’m sorry, but I have to disagree. “Great defensive driving” was happening by covering the inside line on one corner of the entire circuit. If that’s a spectacle of chess DRS is simply the threefold repetition rule that would make it a stalemate.

      2. I guess claiming that without DRS there would not be any overtake is too simplistic. Nowadays cars are setup around DRS because of its great advantage. Drivers avoid to pass on other track zones because it is too risky. Better to wait for the next DRS zone or next lap and do your boring but easy highway overtake. What I wonder is what would happen if DRS is not allowed in one GP. Maybe cars would be setup in different ways so that the benefits and shortcomings of different design philosophies are exacerbated. Maybe not. Perhaps we would watch successful but hard overtakes in unexpected curves. As we had test sprint races last year, why not test a non-DRS race next year?

        1. ^ Kudos. Comment of the day contender.

    4. Every car race ever was won due to mechanical issues.

  4. Good race, an 8 will do.

  5. Would have rated a click higher if LEC had stayed in the battle for the lead. Good fun watching RUS and the RBs though.

    1. @scalextric After Max’s spin there was set to be no battle for the lead until Leclerc retired.

  6. petebaldwin (@)
    22nd May 2022, 15:48

    I gave it a 7. It was entertaining but more down to technical issues than anything else. If everyone had survived, it would have been great to see Lewis and George battling as well as Max and Charles.

  7. I’m feeling generous.

    1. Agreed, Russell was the main highlight but the rest was pretty average. Turned off after Pérez rolled over for Red Bull’s scheme to fix the race.

      The new cars had me following F1 closely for the first time in years, but the continued obsession of F1 with DRS is fast reducing my interest in following the season beyond watching the race highlight clips. The battle between Verstappen and Russell was fun, and will definitely make every F1 season review, but for obvious reasons none of Hamilton’s and Sainz’ passes will.

    2. Possibly the only time we agree

  8. 7. This race goes to show how on certain tracks DRS is needed to keep racing. The usage should be managed after this year though. Maybe shortening some zones.

  9. BLS (@brightlampshade)
    22nd May 2022, 15:50

    Pretty enjoyable, Leclerc’s misfortune and Hamilton getting punted took some of the enjoyment out as with those two still involved I feel the battle at the front would have lasted longer.

    Huge congrats to Red Bull for digging a 1-2 out of what was looking awkward early on.

  10. A team-ordered switch for the race lead on lap 6 with Perez less than a race win’s worth of points away from Max in the standings. Ferrari got eviscerated for far less in 2002.

    Just leaves a bad taste in the mouth

    1. *Race 6.

      @keithcollantine Been asking for an edit button for 14 years now.

    2. It’s a team sport. RB were in a position to give their lead driver a points advantage, what else do you expect them to do?

      1. It’s both a team ‘sport’ and an individual one.
        There is a Drivers Championship, and that shouldn’t be manipulated or fixed either.

        1. It’s a team sport, pure and simple. It’s like saying the golden boot at the world cup can be manipulated by playing the best striker as often as possible

          1. You mean there isn’t a WDC?

            It makes teams and drivers loads of money, so it must mean something.

          2. Did I say there wasn’t?

          3. Effectively, yes.
            You’ve minimised it to zero importance, not even acknowledging that it is an official World Championship, just as the WCC is.

      2. It’s not a team sport, not anymore for sure. There’re 2 garages, not 1. For quite some years there wasn’t even an award for the constructor, plus the drivers are not allowed anymore to “borrow” the car from a team mate if he agrees too in case their car breaks down. Also, the seasons are longer and it’s too early in the season for such “maneouvers”.

    3. The TV feed missed the radio message…
      ” Sergio, Max is the anointed one not you ” lol

    4. petebaldwin (@)
      22nd May 2022, 15:56

      Whilst I agree with you, the difference in 2002 was that there was no battle for the title and no need to switch the driver. Schumacher finished on 144 points. The next non-Ferrari driver was Montoya on 50!

      1. @petebaldwin Ferrari got harangued by the media and fans not just for 2002 (as I mentioned) but for 2001 as well (same place, Austria). And back then Coulthard was only 4 points behind Michael in the standings.

        1. @wsrgo Yes, but Ferrari is not British-based team. So the collective F1 media will forget this ever happened, and still bring up that switch from 20+ years ago the next time team orders come into play.

      2. @petebaldwin I suppose that we should give the picture of the WDC going into the Austrian GP in 2002 – Schumacher was leading on 44 points, Montoya next on 23 points, followed by Ralf Schumacher (20 points), Coulthard on 9 and Button on 8. Because of three DNF’s and one DNS, Barrichello was down in 6th place in the WDC going into that race.

    5. @wsrgo After years of Mercedes being criticized (by certain fans) for far far less too.
      Perez was deservedly in front as Verstappen was behind having made a driving error, spinning off on his own. Verstappen could have passed on his own, easily, so why not allow it? They were under no pressure from any other driver. Any doubt that Red Bull are a one-driver team should at least be consigned to history. Perez exists to assist Verstappen only though he seems ‘happy’ about it.

      1. All they had to do was say “you can fight, just don’t do anything silly” but instead they basically pussyfooted around telling Perez to move over.

      2. After years of Mercedes being criticized (by certain fans) for far far less too.

        Don’t know what are you talking about, BOT gave 1 win to HAM in 2018… and never got it back although it could have happened! Barrichello got his win back after 2 races, in the EU GP. With the US GP, Barrichello got ”2 wins back”. Really BIG difference. Not to mention the number of times BOT’s strategy was compromised in order to use him as a roadblock.

    6. Just leaves a bad taste in the mouth

      That’s Red Bull for you :)

  11. I gave it an 8. Happy for George.

  12. 7 as the race started really well but faded after midway, disappointing too to see Red Bull not allow Perez to defend. No doubt at all Verstappen could and would have passed but, really, the race win was handed over rather than competed for.

  13. First half: 8
    Second half: 6
    Overall: 7

    So many tactics, mistakes and failures made a bit chaotic but enjoyable race in Barcelona. Simce 2016 we saw a three stop strategy without any rain or sc phase.

  14. Max v George was phenomenal without the DRS.

  15. 7/10
    Good race. The positive was the unpredictability all throughout. The takeaway was that role of DRS in modern day F1 is absolutely clear. And without it, it is still possible to keep a fast car behind. What cannot be appreciated is the way Red Bull is bringing in team orders so early in the season. Tough luck for Leclerc, who did all the hard work and left with nothing. Good race from Russel, who showed intelligence in wheel to wheel racing. And Hamilton has to think more long term instead of just wanting to give up even before the race is more than halfway through. Good race from Norris as well and even not at full fitness, he was way ahead of Ricciardo.

    1. @pinakghosh Hamilton’s mood dips dramatically in these kind of situations, it isn’t the first time he’s declared ‘what’s the point guys?’ I think it’s misunderstood, though. It’s a mental readjustment he goes through when he realizes a race win is out of the question (that’s always what he’s competing for) and typically – when told to get on with it by the team – he recovers well. This race he drove exceptionally after K-Mag’s opening lap lunge.

      1. Its how you rage quit in a video game mentality.

    2. @pinakghosh

      And without it, it is still possible to keep a fast car behind.

      And whats wrong with that?

      A slower car should have the opportunity to defend against a faster one & keep them behind. That is a part of racing, Has been since the very beginning & it’s a big part of what creates great battles & memorable moments which stand the test of time & are looked back on fondly for decades after.

      Think Gilles Villeneuve at the 1981 Spanish GP where he held off 5 significantly faster cars to grab an unexpected & amazing win with a drive that is still talked about today. Same with Senna/Mansell at Monaco in 1992 or Alonso/Schumacher at Imola in 2005/06.

      I think DRS often been so powerful that it prevents a slower car been able to defend & hold off a faster one is a negative rather than a positive as it robs fans of seeing some proper racing battles & takes away the opportunity for a driver in a slower car to quality further forward (Or get towards the front via good strategy) & stay there to grab an unexpected result.

      Is it any wonder that in the DRS era the top places have been more dominated by the same 2-3 teams compared to the past? Before DRS maybe a slower team could have done more to grab a top result, But now they just have no chance because even if they qualify well or do a different strategy to get up towards the front they have nothing to fight with thanks to the Dumb Racing System. That more than anything else is what is making things more predictable than ever when it comes to the top 2-3 teams generally been uncontested in the top 6 places.

      1. @roger-ayles I agree to some extent: the issue with being stuck behind was down to dirty air removing that vital pace advantage, plus the effects on engine overheating and tyre wear making it essential to pass quickly or give up and back off, for a while at least. If the cars can follow without too much issue, but still need to work a pass with craft and guile, that’s really what much of racing should be about. Russell’s defensive driving was excellent to see.

      2. I haven’t said that there is anything wrong @roger-ayles. In fact my observation was quite the contrary.

      3. Agree to certain extent. But without DRS, Qualifying can pretty much mean the race result.

      4. I agree with this.

  16. Gave it an 8. Solid GP with battles through the field. I’d have liked to have seen more of alonso as he seemed to be making solid progress through the first half of the race but understandably there was plenty happening out front! Worst part of this weekend was the pointless drone footage. Hopefully we don’t see it again this season…

  17. I gave it at 6/10 as I didn’t like how powerful DRS was in most cases & actually felt the best part of the race was Max’s DRS not working right which actually gave us a great fight between him & George.

    I also kinda found the second half of the race a bit tricky to follow because of how all over the place the strategies & tyre performance was which is unusual for me as i’m usually really good at following that stuff. Felt a bit like a Formula E race in that regard where everyone using the 2 attack modes is so all over the place that the order yo-yo’s about a lot which can make it harder to read & follow, Especially through the mid-field.

    Just felt like a weird race as while there was a lot going on with strategy & passing been generated by DRS & large tyre delta’s it somehow also felt like not a lot was going on because of how easy that passing was. The George/Max fight was great but nothing else really stands out.

  18. The race was made interesting by strategy or DNFs. It could’ve been great but for the DRS. Not one successful defence against a fully functioning DRS. It really has to go, the formula this season allows really close racing, and the DRS just ruins it.

    1. Absolutely!

  19. Was great to see some great racing with Verstappen & Russell…….. But then DRS ruined the opportunity to see some similar battles elsewhere as it was way too powerful as usual & provided far too many boringly easy push of a button highway passes that will always be devoid of any actual excitement & forgotten almost immediately as a result.

    Thats the issue with the silly gimmick & quantity over quality mentality modern fans apparently have.

    Today there was quite a lot of position swapping but none of it was really that exciting or memorable because it was either too easy due to the flappy wing gimmick or because of the tires.

    In the Bridgestone/Michelin/Good Years days when we had proper racing tires a move like Max around the outside of Turn 12 would have been amazing, But in the Pirelli cheese tire era when he’s 2-3 seconds a lap faster on new tires it’s not as exciting because Bottas had nothing to fight back with, It’s a move which will be forgotten because at the end of the day quantity over quality will not give us truly exciting or memorable overtakes.

    Gets a 5 from me.

  20. Just think of the money they could save on rear wing costs by getting rid of the DRS mechanism but keeping the DRS zones, if a car get one second behind in the DRS zone you get shown a blue flag and have to let the chasing car through :-)

  21. While I can’t say I’m happy with how the result came about it was still a great race.

  22. 8.

    What a disaster for Ferrari: 1st – having their lead driver (and the WDC leader) retiring from the race, 2nd – having SAI as “the other driver”. SAI is really starting to look poor now: lost multiple places at the start, then a mistake, but most important… NO SPEED AT ALL. Not present even in the FL battle either. With a driver like this in 1 of their cars and with Mercedes improving… Ferrari has absolutely no real chance to win the WCC. There’s no gain for the team (be it WCC or WDC) having him on-board, they seem to have made a mistake signing him for 2023 too. The job he was supposed to do was done by RUS in the 1st part of the race. On the other hand, PER is doing the best job possible, he’s ”the new BOT” without doubt: he’s there to cover VER, help VER by messing somehow with the opposition’s strategy, finish ahead of the opposition and prevent them from getting max points snatch the PP etc. Basically, PER does something good for the entire team like every race.

    Top drive by RUS, he’s the real deal. Good recovery by HAM too, unfortunately for him the car couldn’t keep up the pace the entire race.

    1. I agree about ferrari making a mistake with signing sainz again, but I wonder who I would take as a ferrari 2nd driver, perhaps bottas? He’s a ferrari-powered driver now and seems to drive well, although he isn’t the greatest at wheel to wheel fights he’s at least consistent and makes less mistakes, also he’s a good qualifier.

  23. After all the hype about the cars this year and that the new design of the cars would improve racing, for me the racing is the same as past seasons. If it were so easy to follow the car in front and overtake on merit, the sport would have ditched DRS. The fact that F1 have kept DRS speaks volumes. These circuits have too many slow corners and chicanes that limit overtaking, such as the final chicane at Barcelona that I have always despised. It’s just pointless whereas the old corner gave drivers a better chance down the main straight such as Mansell on Senna many years ago.

  24. I agree on the DRS great defence by Russell and it shows that it is more exciting and fair racing without DRS. Russel DOTW for me

  25. 7/10 for me. It was heading for an 8 but the final third of the race was a bit dull and predictable.

    A good drive by Russell in particular. He did well to hold off Max for so long. A shame for me that Leclerc had mechanical issues as I don’t think he would have been caught,

    Unlike some I thought the cars were able to follow very close but any tension was usually ruined by a DRS pass. A pretty good drive by Lewis as well considering where he was after his incident with Magnussen.

  26. First instincts were 7
    Russell’s defence vs Verstappen +1
    Red Bull Team orders -1


  27. Disappointed Perez pulled over the second time, he should be a little more selfish. Otherwise a great race.

  28. Not one complaint about LH using DRS to move up through the field ;-)

  29. I have to say, kind of hard to rate. The first 30 or so laps were great, then once Leclerc retired and almost simultaneously Verstappen switched to a three-stopper, the race was over and typical Barcelona snoozefest. So, a 5/10 from me.

  30. I gave it 8, maybe I’ve been too generous, 7,5 would’ve been fairer, but majority of the voters still picked 7 and 8, obviously in spain the expectations for an exciting race are very low, so this surprised positively for the most part, the russell vs verstappen duels were great and hamilton did an awesome recovery.

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